Grade the Trade: 76ers swap Tobias Harris for superstar PG in mock deal

Philadelphia 76ers, Tobias Harris - Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Philadelphia 76ers, Tobias Harris - Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /
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Damian Lillard, Tyrese Maxey – Credit: Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports /

Why the 76ers should go all-in on Lillard

As things currently stand, even the most devout fans among the Philadelphia 76ers faithful may not be too high on the team’s staying power as a legitimate championship contender next season. After all, even if people convince themselves that a disgruntled Harden can at least produce All-Star numbers, their rivals have improved a lot this offseason while the Sixers were busy shooting themselves at the foot.

Going all-in on someone like Lillard, however, gives the franchise the easiest path to retooling while potentially still improving. Obviously, planting the seeds to get it done will require a ton out of Philly, which is justifiable considering Lillard’s level and ample roster control, but the 76ers have shown restraint on this end recently.

Tyrese Maxey will undoubtedly be the start of any engagement with Portland on a potential Lillard trade with Tobias Harris and draft compensation as pot sweeteners. That is pretty clear. Any attempt by the 76ers to cut themselves a discount check will understandably be met with dismissive resistance from the Trail Blazers brass.

Altering the timeline for a franchise clearly designed to go all-in now will be a tough balancing act for the 76ers, but if they truly want to maximize Joel Embiid’s MVP form — despite his seemingly lukewarm stance on the dramatic episodes — being more aggressive on the Lillard front could be the key, regardless of the cost.